So I’m learning how to make concrete pavers with this youtube video.

He mentions that he uses lard as a release agent, so he brushes that into the mold. He also suggests cooking oil or motor oil for colder temperatures.

He also mentions that any type of wood will work, even though he uses laminated wood.

My question: for regular wood, is lard a good release agent? I live in the Caribbean, so there’s no cold temperature.

2 Answers 2


The lard will work fine. The laminated wood would give you smoother sides and bottom.

  • I agree don’t need much it will work really well, I used to use used motor oil it is much thinner but I always had some for free but lard will probably work better.+
    – Ed Beal
    Aug 15, 2019 at 18:48
  • Lard has the advantage of being biodegradable, compared to motor oil.
    – dwizum
    Aug 15, 2019 at 18:57
  • Paste wax is good. Especially applied to melamine-coated plywood.
    – gnicko
    Aug 16, 2019 at 0:12

You'll want to use vegetable shortening, not lard. It will be a lot cheaper unless you have local market conditions that create a glut of pig's fat. Where I come from, you have to go to an artisan grocery to even get lard.

The cheapest hydrogenated vegetable shortening is fine for this, but don't eat it because there are health issues with it.

For thinner oil, used motor oil is poison, less from the oil proper but rather from the toxic base metals that are microscopically scraped off your bearings - cadmium, chromium, and other nasty customers. It won't biodegrade. For a cheap lubricant of that viscosity, try used fryer oil... and that will biodegrade.

  • "...an artisan grocery to even get lard...." Where are you?
    – gnicko
    Aug 16, 2019 at 0:05

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